We were discussing at the cafe, and I was the only Muslim in the group.
Suddenly we heard the azan.
"Why, something wrong?" I asked, wondering why they were suddenly so quiet.
"Oh, aren't you as a Muslim supposed to keep quiet during azan? Some Malays told me that if they talk during azan, they won't be able to die peacefully," replied a confused friend who always mixes with the Malay ladies.
"Oh, that..." I tried to remember what I had heard and read from the hadith regarding this issue.
"Well, Muslims are advised to respect the azan by repeating the muazzin, not merely keeping quiet. Actually there's no authentic narration from the Prophet Muhammad in any hadith, that precisely prohibits one from talking when the Azan is being called," I said
"But you know, I was once scolded by a Malay for talking loudly during azan."
"Sorry about that. Muslims have no right to scold non-Muslims who talk during the call of azan. As Muslims, we are advised to answer the azan, by repeating the azan, the call to prayer. However, talking about really urgent things during the call of azan is all right. Our beloved Prophet Muhammad himself talked to his companions during the call of azan. If it's haram to talk during the call of azan, the Prophet would have said so."
I decided not to tell my confused non-Muslim friends about the belief among Malays that their tongues would be unable to recite the syahadah during their last breath due to the habit of talking during azan is a lie. A lie that abuses the holy name of Prophet Muhammad for there is no authentic hadith that proves that he actually said it. As Muslims are encouraged to repeat the muazzin, that won't be termed as being quiet, right?
Oh, the so-called hadith is this in the Malay language:
Diriwayatkan sebuah hadis yg bermaksud: ‘Hendaklah kamu mendiamkan diri ketika azan, jika tidak Allah akan kelukan lidahnya ketika maut menghampirinya.’
Translated in English: According to a hadith:" You should be quiet during the call of azan, otherwise Allah will stiffen your tongue in the hours of death (so that you won't be able to recite the syahadah)"
However I discover this:
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 746
Abu Sa'id al-Khudri reported: When you hear the call (to prayer), repeat what the Mu'adhdhin pronounces.
Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 747
'Abdullah b. Amr b. al-As reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: When you hear the Mu'adhdhin, repeat what he says, then invoke a blessing on me, for everyone who invokes a blessing on me will receive ten blessings from Allah; then beg from Allah al-Wasila for me, which is a rank in Paradise fitting for only one of Allah's servants, and I hope that I may be that one. If anyone who asks that I be given the Wasila, he will be assured of my intercession.
Our companions say that to repeat the call to prayer is preferred for everyone who hears the call, whether clean or unclean, in a state of post-sexual uncleanliness or menstruating, and so on, as it is a remembrance and all of those people who can should make it. Those who can not do so are the ones who are praying, who are relieving themselves, or are having sexual intercourse. If one is reciting the Qur'an, or making remembrance of Allah (dhikr) or studying and so on, he should stop what he is doing and repeat after the caller to prayer. He may then return to what he was doing, if he wishes, or he can pray a voluntary or obligatory prayer."
He should not speak during the iqamah. Some scholars dislike that he should even speak during the adhan, although al-Hasan, 'Ata and Qatadah permit it. Says Abu Dawud, "I asked Ahmad, 'May a man speak during his adhan?' He said, 'Yes.' 'May he speak during the iqamah?' He said, 'No,' and that is because it is preferred that he make it quickly."
Why oh why, some people like to believe certain hadith which are passed around in the internet and influence their family members to believe them too?
Advising Muslims to do as Prophet Muhammad and his companions is encouraged. Advising Muslims to respect the azan is encouraged but to create fear among them/threaten by saying something which is not found in the al-Quran and any authentic hadith is also haram in Islam... am I right?
And who are we as mere mortals to know the real reason for a dying person not being able to speak during his dying hours? Won't accusing the dying people of their inability to speak, and connecting it their talking during azan, be similar to slander or fitnah?
"Sorry if I disturb you," said my Chinese girlfriend.
"It's ok," I said. "Make yourself at home."
I took off my tudung.
"Some of our Malay friends don't take off their tudung in front of me. They said that it's haram to show hair to other non-Muslim. ," she commented.
I sighed. "Yes, I've heard about it. It's a common belief among traditional Muslims. But look here, they live among themselves in their own homes. It's not easy to do so when you share accommodation with non-Muslims, especially in hostels. Sometimes we share rooms. Besides, wearing the tudung is to keep the hair from being seen by other men. You're a woman although a non-Muslim, but you're not going to tell the men how long my hair is and how it looks and feels like, are you?"
She grinned. "Of course not. You can trust me."
"Then it's safe for me to be in a room with you without my tudung."
"Why isn't your room with any Quranic verse?"she asked.
"Huh?" I was confused.
"I mean, I always see Quranic verses in the rooms of our Malay friends. You don't have any. I'm just wondering."
I smiled my MonaLisa smile. Indeed I don't have any Quranic verses on the walls of my room or my house. Not yet.
"It's not necessary. Displaying the verse is just to help us remember the verses so that it'd be easier to memorise and recite."
"Not to ward of evil or bring good luck? Like a tangkal?"
"Of course not. Who told you that Quranic verses are for those purposes?"
She shrugged her shoulders.
Oh, please, please, please.. Tell them the truth. Don't confuse them further and don't live life being misled by misinformation.